Alen Mattich was born in Zagreb, which gives him a head start by birthright in getting a grip on all the terrible events in recent Balkan history. He grew up in Libya, Canada and the United States. Now he lives in the UK and makes a living writing for Dow Jones and The Wall Street Journal.
The Heart of Hell is Mattich’s third novel featuring Marko della Torre who operates as a senior member of Croatia’s military intelligence. Since the period of the book’s action is the early autumn of 1991, it’s a dangerous time to be in a job like della Torre’s. Croatia is looking for independence from the rest of the former Yugoslavia, the powerful Serbs have already begun lethal attacks on their one-time countrymen, racial cleansing is just around the corner.